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Erring Delhi hotels face flak from music industry licensing authority

19-January-2005
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Erring Delhi hotels face flak from music industry licensing authority

The Indian Music Industry’s licensing arm, Phonographic Performance Limited (PPL), cracked down on Delhi’s prominent hotels this New Years Eve for defaulting on payment of license fees. Justice R.C. Chopra of the Delhi High Court handed down a judgment on January 3, to 14 prominent hotels and restaurants. The court directed the hotels and restaurants to either pay up the copyright license fee for the event/party they hosted on the New Year Eve, or face legal restraint from playing any music until the next hearing on January 17.

The hotels that haven’t paid their dues include Park Royal, Vasant Continental, Turquoise Cottage, Geoffreys, Hotel Siddharth, Tivoli Garden, Opus Lounge, among others.

Ahsan Siddiqui, Business Development Manager, PPL, said, “We have requested them to pay the fee but they haven’t done so. Vasant Continental has not paid up their annual license fee for two years. Hotel Siddharth has also not paid the annual license fee for this year.”

In the past, similar accomplishments have served PPL’s cause. On December 31, 2003, the Bombay High court had directed seven major hotels in Mumbai, to pay license fee for playing music to PPL, or face restraint from playing music at all. Another case in point was February 14, 2003 - Valentine’s Day, when PPL secured a similar injunction from the Bangalore High Court against defaulting hotels. In both instances, the defaulting hotels had to pay up the requisite license fees in due course.

When contacted, Vasant Continental’s spokesperson said, We did not have any event in the hotel so we are not liable to pay any fees.”

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